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Sunday, May 15, 2011



Ralph Peterson’s Unity Project
Outer Reaches (Onyx) :: Man oh man, does drummer Peterson ever have a treat in store for you! Although ostensibly a tonal homage to the organ and trumpet mastery of jazz greats Larry Young and Woody Shaw, Outer Reaches transcends the tribute tag by being an album for the ages that’ll grow on you with each successive spin. Bonus points for ending with the seriously spiritual standard “We Three Kings” and the seriously spatial “Spectrum” by John McLaughlin.

Larry Young
& Jimi Hendrix“Young/Hendrix” (Reprise) :: They’re still arguing whether this track off Nine To The Universe is “proof” that Hendrix would’ve gone jazzbo had he lived. Who knows, mebbe he woulda recorded a tribute album to Robert Johnson too!

Eric Clapton
Me And Mr. Johnson (Warner Bros.) :: Exactly!

Boogie 4 Stu: A Tribute To Ian Stewart (Eagle) :: As you can see, tribute albums are a dime a dozen these days and most of them only make you wanna ditch the disc you’re playing and listen to the original artist instead...but not this one! That’s because this tribute to the Rolling Stones’ late lamented co-founder and ace ivory tickler is not only a more than worthy heartfelt tip o’the hat to the man, it’s an exemplary exercise in the kind of countrified boogie blues rock that Stu excelled in playing all his life.

You’ve heard Stu if you own any Rolling Stones album recorded prior to 1985 and you might have actually seen him play if you ever attended a Stones concert prior to 1982. But if those credentials aren’t heavy enough for ya, lemme hasten to add that he also played on Led Zeppelin’s archetypal track “Rock And Roll” and was actually name-checked by the band on “Boogie With Stu,” which explains where this album’s title came from.

Enter keyboardist Waters who used to play with Stewart and who, charmingly more by accident than design, stumbled up the perfect group of musicians to help him record his rockin’ requiem: The Rolling Stones. That’s right, for the first time in a decade, you can hear Mick Jagger (vocals and harp); Keith Richards (guitar and vocals); Ronnie Wood (guitar and vocals); Bill Wyman (bass); and Charlie Watts (drums) playing together on an album, aided and abetted by the likes of Jools Holland (keyboards and vocals), P.J. Harvey (vocals and sax); and a dozen and a half other equally excelling musicians—including none other than Ian Stewart himself!

Sauté with a Glyn Johns mix and garnish with an album cover specially painted for the occasion by legendary artist and designer Peter Blake and you’ve got an eleven track triumph that’s about as polar opposite from Jamming With Edward! as you can possibly get. Besides, aren’t you the least bit intrigued as to what a Rolling Stones version of Dylan’s “Watching The River Flow” sounds like? I thought you might.

Be seeing you!

Sun, May 15, 2011 | link 

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